WATERTOWN, Mass. – A 32-save effort by junior goalie Gabe Antoni (Lansdale, Pa./Springfield) and a frantic penalty kill in the final seconds helped the Bentley hockey team post a 2-1 victory over visiting RIT Friday in Atlantic Hockey action at Ryan Arena.
With Bentley clinging to a 2-1 lead late in the third period, they were faced with a 6-on-3 penalty kill after penalties to Max French (West Kelowna, B.C./West Kelowna) and Andrew McDonald (New Brighton, Minn./Fargo), and after RIT goalie Jordan Ruby was pulled for an extra-attacker with just over a minute left.
Antoni though and the three Bentley skaters kept the door shut, and an RIT penalty on Brad McGowan with six seconds left ended the threat.
The Falcons took a 1-0 lead on a goal by freshman Ryan McMurphy (Broken Arrow, Okla./Tri-City) with 1:02 left in the first period, despite just four shots in the opening frame. His initial shot attempt when off an RIT defenseman's skate, but he corralled the rebound and freed himself with a deke for an open shot from the slot. He then ripped his shot top shelf over Ruby's glove for his third goal of the season.
Bentley then made it 2-0 early on in the second period, a period which saw the teams whistled for a combined 29 penalty minutes. Freshman Matt Sieckhaus (Fenton, Mo./Amarillo) notched the goal, his first of the season. The goal was setup by a slap shot from the point by defenseman Charlie Donners (Norwood, Mass./Dexter School). Sieckhaus was among several players in front of the net, and he redirected Donners' shot past Ruby for the goal at 2:08.
RIT got back in it with a goal by forward Andrew Miller at the 5:06 mark. But Antoni was at his best in the final period with 14 saves. The Falcons had a brief 5-on-3 after a five-minute major and a two-minute minor on the Tigers, but ended up having to fend off a 6-on-3 after those penalties expired, and the two penalties on Bentley and Ruby being pulled.
The Falcons improve to 9-6-3 in Atlantic Hockey play with the win, while the Tigers drop to 7-6-4. The same two teams will close out their series tomorrow night for a 7:05 face off.